One of the most famous libraries in the world is the red-walled room that sits quietly along one side of the Clue board game (it was Col. Mustard, with a lead pipe). The game was invented in 1944 by a Brit who wanted to keep friends and family occupied during war-time air raid drills, when Londoners hid in underground bunkers. It’s fun to imagine that this murderous room inspired author Umberto Eco as he wrote The Name Of The Rose some 35 years later, a literary (and Latin filled!) murder mystery set in an Italian Franciscan Abbey in 1327.
The monk’s library is filled with secrets, and is off limits to all but a special few.
Brother William arrives to investigate a death, only to find that he, too, is banned from the library. Somehow, it is connected to the many deaths that follow. (“May my hand remain steady as I prepare to tell what happened…”)
Even so, Brother William finds much in books: “At other times he would pass an entire day in the great hall… leafing through manuscripts as if seeking nothing but his enjoyment (while, around us, the corpses of monks, horribly murdered, were multiplying.)”
You’ll find many mysterious murders in the Lennoxville Library, all between the pages of books (and as read out in audio books). The library invites one and all to its Open House on Saturday, August 22 (from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.) to meet our book-loving volunteers and staff, who will be pleased to offer suggested reading, whatever your interests. There’s murder, of course, from old favorites like Agatha Christie, to contemporary authors like Robert Galbraith, James Patterson, Ian Rankin and Frances McNeil. And oh so many more. Hundreds upon hundreds…
Plus romance, religion, thrillers and lots of Governor-General’s Award-winning fiction. There’s a cozy children’s area filled with picture books and tales for all ages, guaranteed to keep the interest of your children. Do you think that’s too brazen, the belief that your kids can love to read? They just need to find the right book. (Sometimes, it takes more than one try. We’re happy to help.)
Stuart Little went to the librarian one day and simply asked: “Do you have any books for someone like me?”
“How about Mice Are Nice?” she said. (Find out more in Stuart Little At The Library, words by Susan Hill, pictures by Lydia Halverson, 2001, filed at C-66). It’s a good way to show kids how all they need to do is ask. Well, they may also need to negotiate their reading material with an owl; you’ll need to read to find out how that works out.
Sometimes you’ll find even bigger critters in a library. The title Library Lion tells you all you need to know:
“Mr. McBee ran down the hall to the head librarian’s office. ‘Miss Merriweather!’ he called.
‘No running,’ said Miss Merriweather without looking up.
‘But there is a lion!’ said Mr. McBee. ‘In the library!’
‘Is he breaking any rules?’ asked Miss Merriweather. She was very particular about rule breaking.
‘Well, no,’ said Mr. McBee. ‘Not really.’
‘Then leave him be.’”
And so all is well, until the lion… breaks a rule. Library Lion is by Michelle Knudsen (words) and Kevin Hawkes (pictures) (2006, at C-88). Kids will enjoy reading about the lion, and how he redeems himself.
Or consider Sam. He’s a ginger, and a baby who was, quite simply, Born To Read (words by Judy Sierra and pix by Marc Brown, 2014, filed at C-106).
Sam read in bed,
and in the hall,
and in the tub,
and at the mall.
He read while playing basketball!
Okay, maybe that’s a bit much. But reading (and a cargo jet) save the day in this beautiful gouache-artwork book.
All are welcome to pop by the Lennoxville Library for our Open House, Saturday, August 22 . You can also ask about our free, weekly children’s activities, as well as our French- and English-language book clubs. We’re at the corner of College and Queen streets. And yes, there will be a book sale and children’s events (in English at 10:30, in French at 11:30).
– – Eleanor Brown, August 17, 2015